Thursday, September 3, 2015

Cookbooks, Blogs and Other Fabulous Cooking Resources

By Sarah Janes Ugoretz

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that it’s an understatement that we—our members and everyone at Harmony Valley Farm—love to eat. We take time to consider our food purchases and care about what we’re putting into our bodies. Cooking is often part of that process, and when you’re faced with a variety of fruits and vegetables that you may not have grown up eating, it can be overwhelming and even intimidating. Considering this, we wanted to tap into the creativity and the dearly held culinary resources of you, our members. So, without further ado, here are some of your favorite sources and sites to visit when you’re holding a bunch of yukina savoy in your hand and thinking, “What the heck am I supposed to do with this?”

Print sources
Let me start by saying that our members have first-class taste when it comes to cookbooks! From locally to internationally known, here are a few of your favorite go-to vegetarian (or mostly vegetarian!) cookbooks.

From Asparagus to Zucchini: This classic reference by FairShare CSA Coalition is a must-have in any local eater’s kitchen. From storage and nutrition information to preparation ideas, this book will be a long-time companion to the home cook. Be sure to check out their more recent book—Farm Fresh and Fast—as well.

Anything by Deborah Madison!: Deborah Madison has made it into our newsletters on numerous occasions. As a trained chef with decades of experience, she is dedicated to high quality, seasonal ingredients. Check out the following: Vegetable Literacy, The New Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, The Greens Cookbook, Seasonal Fruit Desserts, Local Flavors, and The Savory Way. I’ll add that I often use Vegetable Literacy as a reference or for more hands-on recipes, whereas I find that The New Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone is a wonderful place to go for ideas and inspiration—especially since it is full of variations!

Good Food Book: A few of you mentioned Jane E. Brody’s classic from 1985. You’ll find Brody’s book full of highly accessible and very “tweak-able” plant-based recipes. Oh, and she could care less if you’re trying to watch your carb intake. Also look for Brody’s Good Food Gourmet.

Farmers Market-based books: There is a growing number of cookbooks that cater to the bounty of farmers markets. For a selection by Wisconsin’s own, check out Savoring the Harvest by Irene Cash and Fresh Market Wisconsin by Terese Allen.

Plenty and Plenty More: Yotam Ottolenghi is nothing short of a wizard in the kitchen. These two books are purely vegetarian, but his others—though they include meat-based recipes—are also worth adding to your collection. You’ll find that some of his spices may not be in your cabinet, but a quick trip to your local spice shop can quickly fix that!

Since we can’t go into detail for every cookbook suggestion, here are the others that you shared:

Barefoot Contessa Series by Ina Garten
The Blue Plate Dinner Cookbook by Tim Lloyd and James Novak
Celebration of Wellness by James Levin and Natalie Cedarquist
Cook’s Illustrated Complete Vegetarian Cookbook by Cook’s Illustrated
The Epicurious Cookbook by Tanya Steel and the Editors of
The Flavor Bible by Karen Page and Andrew Domenburg
The Flavor Thesaurus by Niki Segnit
Fresh from the Farmstead by Gooseberry Patch
The Happy Herbivore Cookbook by Lindsay S. Nixon
Herbs & Spices: The Cook’s Reference by Jill Norman
The High-Protein Vegetarian Cookbook by Katie Parker and Kristen Smith
How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman
Indian Cooking by Madhur Jaffrey
The Kitchen Pantry Cookbook by Erin Coopey
Live Raw: Raw Food Recipes for Good Health and Timeless Beauty by Mimi Kirk
The Lost Art of Real Cooking by Ken Albala and Rosanna Nafziger Henderson
The Moosewood Restaurant Series by The Moosewood Collective
Nourishing Broth by Sally Fallon Morell and Kayla T. Daniel
Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon
Oh She Glows by Angela Liddon (try the black bean and sweet potato enchiladas!)
The Pure Kitchen by Hailie Klecker
Roots by Diane Morgan and Antonis Achilleos
Sage Cottage Herb Garden Book by Dorry Norris
Sauces: Classical and Contemporary Sauce Making by James Peterson
The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook by Deb Perelman
The Soup Bible by Debra Mayhew
Tender by Nigel Slater (try the Bacon and Broccoli Soup!)
The Vegetarian Epicure by Anna Thomas (try the Tomato Bisque!)
The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook by Alissa Segersten and Tom Maltese

Magazines go hand-in-hand with anticipation. Every month, a fresh assortment of techniques, culinary tools, and recipes awaits you, and you can pick and choose which to try your hand at. Below are a few of your favorites.

Eating Well and Cooking Light: These magazines cater to the whole foodies among you, with ease and simplicity in mind. Those who eat with the seasons will likely find Eating Well and Cooking Light to be stellar resources. Their respective websites feature menu and meal planning apps as well as clean eating guides.

Saveur: With a nod to high quality, seasonal ingredients, Saveur may ask you to step out of your comfort zone. However, I have found that the recipes are, for the most part, accessible. You’ll also be regularly exposed to the culinary traditions of far away and not so far away places, from Spain and Germany to Baja, California and New Orleans.  

Online Sources
While we know that our cherished, food-splattered cookbooks are irreplaceable, there is also a place in the kitchen for fancy schmancy food blogs, apps, and other technology-based resources. Check out a few of your go-to sources below.

Food52: While Food52 is largely a recipe collective for home cooks, staff regularly try out recipes and provide their comments. You can save recipes for a rainy day and organize them any which way you’d like—a feature which has come in handy for me on more than a few occasions! Regular contests add an extra flair of excitement. From Your Best Middle Eastern Recipe to Your Best Recipe with Zucchini, there are endless amounts of creative recipes to peruse.

100 Days of Real Food: If you’re interested in cutting out processed foods, then put this website at the top of your list. In addition to recipes, this blog provides a wide variety of helpful information, from recommended reading and cookbooks to kid-tested recipes and free week-long family meal plans on a budget.

The New York Times Cooking App: According to one of our members, this resource won her heart for its “ease and variety.” With an impressive selection of filters ranging from ingredient and preparation method to meal type, your search will quickly be met with a plethora of recipe ideas.

There are a variety of other online resources to keep in mind, including TheKitchn, Martha Stewart, Pinterest, Food in Jars, and My Whole Food Life. Also, be sure to check out your favorite website, magazine, or cookbook author on Facebook—they’re likely to post recipe ideas regularly. Plus, this is another way to tap into a community of like-minded cooks and eaters.

Many thanks to you, our members, for taking the time to share your favorite culinary gems with us. I know I’ve added more than a few new sources to my own list of favorites. May your time in the kitchen be an ongoing adventure in creativity and healthy eating! 

1 comment:

farmerchef said...

An excellent list that we plan to link to this week on the Facebook page of the Wisconsin Farmers Market Association .